Project managers have their work cut out for them. With so many projects happening at once, it can be difficult to focus on what’s important and coordinate the various resources needed to keep each project moving forward seamlessly. When they’re lacking visibility into each project, it’s common for managers to prioritize projects that don’t deliver value to their companies simply because they have no easy way of knowing which are most important to the company’s bottom line.
Project portfolio management (PPM) can make or break an organization. With the right approach to PPM, businesses can enjoy increased efficiency, improved prioritization, better results, higher profitability, and recovered control over their portfolios.
The wrong approach, however, can be quite disastrous. Projects can run over budget, the wrong decisions can be made, employees can get aggravated, and outcomes can be suboptimal.
To give project managers the visibility and real-time data they need to maximize profitability and make sure things stay on schedule, PPM solutions have emerged in recent years.
These tools provide robust project management capabilities—including portfolio management, project intake, resource management, and execution. Altogether, these features help organizations drive ROI and reduce costs while gaining deeper visibility into their business.
The Challenges of Enterprise Project Portfolio Management
It’s common for a project manager to have three, five, or even ten projects going on at the same time. Some of these projects require the same resources—whether that’s people, technology, or assets. Some of them are mission-critical, while others are done for goodwill, and still others are done just because nobody knows how wasteful they actually are.
Lacking insight into this cacophony of information can cause serious problems for your entire portfolio, including these four:
1. Mismanaged Timelines
Without enough visibility into your projects, it’s impossible for project managers to know whether they are at capacity, have the right allocation of resources, or have the right milestones planned to hit deadlines.
A critical employee, for example, might have four projects on their plate that are all due at once. While the best PMs can juggle multiple projects at once, there are only so many hours in the day.
At best, your team is only going to get the job done—but not at its full potential. At worst, bottlenecks can lead to delayed starting times or deadlines that aren’t met.
2. Projects that run over budget
When you don’t have deep insight into your project portfolio, it’s difficult to keep track of where the money goes. All too often, projects run over budget. Depending on how much and how often, this can have a tremendously negative impact on the bottom line—resulting in decreased profitability, fewer resources, and unhappy shareholders and investors, among other things.
The risk of poor PPM is a lower-than-predicted return on investment. Being able to see budgeting constraints and risks from an individual project and resourcing level for project managers and a bird’s-eye view for executive management is difficult, but it doesn’t have to be.
3. Overworked and stressed employees
With project-specific data spread out all over the place, workers are forced to hop from platform to platform and talk to each person involved in every different project just to keep tabs on how things are progressing. To ensure deadlines are met and objectives are achieved, this data needs to be monitored.
However, in today’s age of instant gratification and real-time expectations, this old-school approach leaves much to be desired. Nobody wants to have to spend their time moving from one platform to the next when they know that—in today’s modern age—they should be able to see it all in one central location via a real-time dashboard.
4. Poor decisions
When you don’t have deep visibility into all of the projects in your portfolio, it’s impossible to make the best decisions. Some projects can bring in huge chunks of revenue, while others can be a drain on time and resources. Without the right data on hand, project managers might inadvertently decide to devote more resources to a less profitable project while a vital one hangs in the balance.
The above list is by no means exhaustive. However, these challenges in project portfolio management can have devastating consequences.
How PPM Solutions Solve These Problems
Businesses are increasingly turning to modern PPM solutions to overcome these challenges, and more.
With the right PPM platform in place, project managers can accelerate timelines across the board thanks to increased visibility and real-time scheduling tools. This insight helps reduce costs considerably, giving project managers clarity into spending—as well as which projects are valuable and which are lesser priorities.
What’s more, PPM tools increase employee productivity by eliminating the need to switch between several platforms to find the information they need. Thanks to automation, everything is sent to one place. This makes employees’ jobs easier—which boosts morale.
PPM solutions also help organizations make better decisions. By focusing on high-priority projects, it’s easier for project managers to get the resources they need to make sure things get done on time—the right way. Further, robust reporting analytics tools increase organizational alignment, which makes it easier to repeat past successes.
PPM Business Software for Modern Enterprises
If you’re looking for a better approach to project portfolio management, Changepoint Project Portfolio Management (daptiv) can help your organization get better results.
With Changepoint PPM, you’ll realize business value quickly while increasing visibility into your operations and maturing your PPM strategy. The adaptable platform allows you to monitor and manage multiple types of work, including waterfall, agile, and lean. As an added bonus, you won’t have to worry about IT headaches or extensive coding required to make the platform suit your needs, either.
Add it all up, and that’s the ticket to a more efficient organization—one that delights clients, employees, and shareholders alike.